A Caring Man

2011 Golden Elephant Award Winner

A Caring Man

By Akira Arai

Translated by Marc Adler
Fiction / Thriller
Hardcover, 352 pages, 5.5 x 8.5 inches
U.S.$24.95 / CAN$29.95

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Is full recovery from abuse ever possible? The answer seems to be yes for young and handsome Yoshio, who survived a stomach- churning case.

When he was abandoned as an infant at the doors of a hospital, his bod was covered with lacerations. Their shapes hinted at a sick sense of humor if not a diseased mind, but after doctors managed to save his life he grew up to become a model student. Today he’s the youthful head of a non-profit. He says he’s forgiven his nameless mother whom he doesn’t remember

But that’s only the beginning of the story. Yoshio’s true challenge has begun.

The unthinkable happens when Tokyo Tower—symbol of Japan’s high-growth era and enduring landmark—collapes from multiple explosions in the worst criminal attack the country has ever experienced. While the Public Security Bureau combs its database on groups like Al-Qaeda and anti-capitalist movements that conducted corporate bombings in the past, the culprits and the truth remain elusive.

Mariko, camerawoman for a salacious newsweekly, barely escaped the disaster alive after shooting pictures of the tower as it bore down upon her. When she examins her capture, she finds in addition to Pulitzer-grade footage a shocking series of photos that not even a gossip rag ought to make public.

Still affected by her trauma, she is entrusted with a new assignment by her diabolical editor-in-chief, who whishes to expose a young and upcoming social activist as being less sparkling—and more interesting—than he appears. After Mariko is drawn into Yoshio’s orbit, however, what emerges are more than peccadilloes.

Co-winner of the first Golden Elephant Award, A Caring Man is a riveting thriller and inquiry into evil and the scant, far chance of redemption, an indictment of the hollow soul of terrorism and of domains of internet and youth culture. Established in 2009, the Golden Elephant Award is granted to genre novels that augur worldwide appeal and supports their simultaneous international releases.

Born in 1956, Akira Arai is a film writer and producer of note credited for international projects as head of his own studio, Kinetique. A Caring Man, which he submitted to the Golden Elephant Award enticed by its global vision, marks his debut as a novelist. He lives in Tokyo, Japan.

“Everything about this book from its structure to its themes and execution is modern, making it a complete ‘entertainment story.’ It is the ideal thematic match for these times, deserving of a literary grand prize.”
—Kanjiro Sakura, Golden Elephant Award judge and co-producer of the film Inception